Save the H&F Archive! A blog by local historian Simon Rodway that needs your support
10th February 2011
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A blog by Simon Rodway of Silvercane tours on behalf of the Borough Archives


I am a local London Blue Badge tourist guide who has worked with LBHF since 2003 increasing local residents' awareness and appreciation of a comparatively unknown part of London.  I helped the Borough win a Silver Award at the Visit London Awards 2007 for 'Best Borough Initiative' for our rich repertoire of free local walking tours. The research 'engine' behind all of this has always been Jane and Anne at the Borough Archives at Lilla Husset, which is due to close at the end of February.

Jane and Anne have an enormous reservoir of LBHF knowledge, and if they go, that goes with them. It isn't just a case of phoning up for a fact, you have to go in there and dig for yourself. There is an huge amount of information there and Jane and Anne have helped enormously by shortening our research times. 

There is an increasing interest in local history and genealogy, but the Borough says the £70,000 saved can be ploughed into helping old people, but those are the very ones who are the most enthusiastic users of the Borough Archives.

In my experience giving residents unrestricted access to local records and treasures from the history of their localities, enriches their appreciation of their neighbourhoods, and helps maintain everything from consumer confidence in local economies to neighbourliness and enjoyment of life. Allowing residents to know about their past, in my experience, helps cheer people up.

Other boroughs, such as Westminster & Kensington & Chelsea have much used and appreciated archives - it would be tragic if Hammersmith loses its own excellent service. Certainly, restricting research facilities will severely hamper my efforts to spread the word to the rest of London that Hammersmith and Fulham is a fascinating corner of the capital, one well worth visiting, if not actually moving to!

About the Author

David W

Member since: 10th July 2012


I'm the owner of thebestof hammersmith and fulham so I get the chance to write about the borough and all the good things I find as I go around talking to businesses. Join in and tell people about...

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